Tag: Energy & Climate

>> Back to January 2018 Issue

Vert Asset Management, a dedicated ESG investment manager, recently announced the launch of the Vert Global Sustainable Real Estate Fund (Ticker: VGSRX), an open-end mutual fund which seeks to achieve long-term capital appreciation. The Fund invests across the globe in publicly listed real estate investment trusts (REITs) using evidence-based environmental, social and governance (ESG) metrics.

“Is this new Vert fund simply a ‘feel good fund’ for those concerned about climate change? The rapidly increasing commitment to ESG investing by institutional investors suggests otherwise. read more

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Building an Economy That Works for Everyone

By Betsy Biemann, CEO and Keith Bisson, President, Coastal Enterprises, Inc.

Last year, as CEI conducted a strategic review as part of our leadership transition, we found ourselves asking the same questions that were being asked across the country, on both sides of the political aisle. At the heart of those questions was the recognition that our economy is not working for everyone. And a major takeaway was that rural regions, gateway cities, and the people who live there were being left behind. Maine-based CEI is taking strides to change that, from investing in small businesses, job training programs, and pragmatic policy solutions.

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Local Investing for Impact: A New Tool for Place-Focused Foundations

By Deb Markley, Senior Vice President, LOCUS Impact Investing

After decades of working at the intersection of community development, philanthropy and community economic development, we see a significant shift in how philanthropic assets are being used to build vibrant, prosperous communities. Many place-focused foundations are seeking to complement their grantmaking with local investments to create greater impact in their own communities. There’s a growing recognition that traditional grantmaking is not enough to address complex, tough community issues like early childhood education, affordable and energy efficient housing, good jobs and career opportunities for all.

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Invest Close to Home with the Homewise Community Investment Fund

By Laura Altomare, CFRM, Director of Communications and Development, Homewise

Homewise is a non-profit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that offers a comprehensive suite of homeownership services for low-to-moderate income individuals and families, many of whom have been largely underserved by traditional lending institutions. Our services include financial education and coaching, real estate brokerage, mortgage lending, home improvement and refinance lending, real estate development and disinvested property rehabilitation. Each of our services is designed to bolster our other services, providing a one-stop resource for creating an accessible and affordable path to successful homeownership.

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>> Back to December 2017 Issue

Samsung Trails Behind Apple in New Greenpeace Guide to Greener Electronics. Average Grade Across 17 Companies Is D+, Indicating Long Way to Go Toward Sustainable IT.

The 2017 Guide to Greener Electronics (the Guide) was released in mid-October by Greenpeace USA, with rankings of seventeen of the world’s leading consumer electronics companies on sustainable manufacturing and design of IT products. Find it here: www.greenpeace.org/greenerguide

Companies were evaluated based on their transparency, commitment, performance and advocacy efforts in three critical areas: reduction of greenhouse gases through renewable energy; use of recycled materials; and elimination of hazardous chemicals.

“Tech companies claim to be at the forefront read more

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>> Back to December 2017 Issue

Green Century Capital Management announced recently that its assets under management (AUM) reached a new landmark, exceeding $500 million as of October 20, 2017. Green Century is the investment advisor to the first family of fossil fuel-free responsible and diversified mutual funds in the U.S. Green Century’s unique combination of three characteristics allows it to make an impact well beyond its size: Green Century invests in sustainable companies, leads a shareholder advocacy program and is owned by nonprofit organizations.

Green Century (www.greencentury.com) read more

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Giving Capitalism a Social Conscience: An Interview with Muhammad Yunus

By David Bornstein, New York Times

>> Back to December 2017 Issue

For more than 40 years, Muhammad Yunus, the Bangladeshi founder of the Grameen Bank and recipient of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize[1], has been asserting that the most powerful way to eradicate poverty is to unleash the untapped entrepreneurial capacity of people everywhere. “Poverty is not created by poor people,” he says. “It’s created by the system we built. Poor people are like a bonsai tree. You take the best seed from the tallest tree in the forest, but if you put it in a flower pot to grow, it grows only a meter high. There’s nothing wrong read more

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SRI is Growing Up Right Before Our Very Eyes

By Matthew Blume, CFA , Director of ESG Research and Shareholder Advocacy, Appleseed Capital

At Appleseed Capital, we have watched developments in SRI and ESG with great satisfaction. Having launched the Appleseed Fund nearly 11 years ago, we are proud to have been a participant in the long-term movement to align investments with values. As we look forward to 2018 and beyond, we expect to see the recent trends surrounding SRI investing to remain solidly intact. We believe that more and more traditional investors and asset managers will come to understand the value, both social and financial, of investing with a purpose, and we are confident that the Sustainable Responsible Impact Investing industry will continue to evolve in response to the changing political and economic environment.

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Urgent Needs for 2018

By John Streur, President and CEO, Calvert Research & Management

Aligning the capital markets more directly with the urgent needs we face as a society to halt environmental destruction and reverse decades of worsening inequality must be our priority for 2018. Alignment needs to occur at every level, across the global markets. Despite the tremendous efforts behind the Paris Climate Accord, formalization of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and a long history of other efforts to change the course of climate change and inequality, we are not making nearly the progress needed. The 1,700 signatories to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, which represent $70 trillion of assets and a wave of press about ESG investing, have not gotten us on track yet.

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